Archive for October, 2008

Disney’s Princesses
29 October, 2008

Disney is running out of fairytale princesses.  They’re the marketing core of Disney’s business with little girls, and they’re running out of fairytales to turn into movies!

I have a solution.  Well, two, but the first one is ‘remake the old stuff’ and that doesn’t really count.

The solution is, use operas.  Tonnes of princesses in operas. Lots of name recognition.  Some of the BEST SONGS EVER just waiting to be reinterpreted/ruined for new audiences. 

Aida:  Kidnapped Ethiopian Princess is enslaved in Egypt and freed with a man who must choose between his duty to his Pharoah and his love for the Princess.

Carmen:  A wild and independent Gypsy woman (who can be a princess) betrays her true love, becomes a fugitive for her troubles and must make amends.

Madam Butterfly:  A Japanese prostitute is married to an American sailor.  When he leaves her for a white woman, she kills her child and slits her …own…throat….

Okay, maybe not EVERY opera makes a good disney movie.

(pity about Madam Butterfly.  Sounds like a Disney movie.  You know, pretty butterfly motifs, an evil cockroach badguy…ah never mind).

Woomera
28 October, 2008

Every now and then, you find a small bit of the world where a lot has happened. 

Woomera is in the middle of nowhere and they’ve tested the british rocket programme there, launched spaceships into orbit, tested nuclear bombs there and built a concentration camp for ‘illegal’ immigrants there.

When I went to Europe, you couldn’t walk three feet without passing a plaque or museum or monument.  History oozes out of such an old continent, but in Australia, it’s hard to find anything that full of events and circumstances outside of the big cities, and even then, they rarely have the kind of amazing visceral gut punchingly amazing history that you find in Woomera.  How the hell is the place where sheep were first farmed going to compare to a nuclear bomb? 

 

Woomera: the best expanse of nothing in the world.

On Racism
27 October, 2008

“I ain’t white, I’m Australian.  My skin colour is sunburnt.”

Australia
26 October, 2008

Things I love about this country:

– You can go to jail for not voting.

– Our national heroes are a bank robber and a horse.

– Our most solemn national holiday celebrates a military defeat.

– EVERYTHING can kill you.  I’ve almost been killed by trees more than I’ve almost been killed by snakes. 

– When it rains, people say ‘Oh, good.’

– We have a public holiday for a horse race.

– Posh sports just don’t stay posh in Australia.  Anyone can sail, play golf, cricket, rugby or race cars.  Anyone can do it, really.

Neil Gaiman
23 October, 2008

“She killed herself, and now her ghost sits by the curbside as they take her body away, waiting to feel happy.”

Paraphrased from “Endless Nights.”

Ranting is good for site hits
16 October, 2008

Wow, I rant for the first time and quadruple my hits.

That’s right.  I got four hits!!!

What’s wrong with a bill of rights?
15 October, 2008

I don’t usually leave opinions up here.  Considering that only 3 people view this regularly, I’ll probably lose their patronage if I started ranting.  So this will be a rare thing…even though every other blog does it.

A bill of rights is a good thing….if you don’t have a strong, independent judiciary like we have in Australia.  If you have a strong judiciary, a bill of rights becomes problematic. 

The thing is, universal human rights are a good idea, but they change over time.  300 years ago, the idea of men who didn’t own land having the vote was ludicrous. 100 years ago, the idea of women voting was ludicrous.  80 years ago, the idea of having access to free healthcare or unemployment benefits was abhorrent. 50 years ago, equal treatment for all races, colours, creeds and sex was laughable. 20 years ago, the idea of having a right of control over who has your private information was ludicrous….and then times change and the rights change.

They don’t only expand, they also contract, and this is where a bill of rights becomes problematic.  A right to organise militias and bear arms was, 200 years ago in the US, an important right.  Now, while still on the bill, it’s of slightly less use….but can they get it removed?  Not without a lot of problems. 

The number 1 problem being that you’d have to set up a way to remove it which won’t be open to abuse by the wrong people in power. This is difficult. Essentially, such a system is too rigid to change over time.  If universal rights were exactly that, then it wouldn’t be a problem, but they change and a bill is too rigid to change.

On the other hand, a strong judiciary is a great way to uphold rights and keep it flexible.  You know how many rights the Australian constitution protects?  One.  And it’s implied.  Are we oppressed? Under the thumb of a harsh government? No.

And when society decides, for whatever reason, that, oh i dunno, thanks to improving communications and highly contagious diseases, we don’t need a right to free assembly, then they’ll be there to effect it.  If we had a bill of rights, well we’d all be infected, wouldn’t we.

Treatment
14 October, 2008

Picture a world where all the urban myths are true.

“1983”

James Turk is a down on his luck crocodile hunter, paid piecemeal for every croc he kills in the sewers of New York.  His life takes a turn for the worse when he accidentally rescues a homeless man from an angry mob.  The homeless man turns out to be escaped chinese prisoner and former Australian Prime Minister Harold Holt, whose escaped from a Chinese Submarine, and has 24 hours to save the free world from a communist plot!!!

A tongue in cheek action thriller featuring rocket cars, men in black, illuminati and Jewish world conspiracies, hollow earth and Margaret Thatcher as the first cross dressing prime minister of Great Britain.

The Furies
10 October, 2008

Erinyes, Eumenides, gracious and angry.  The earth’s personification of revenge and anger of the dead.

I swear, there’s a horror movie involving armies of hot angry babes in there somewhere.

What the Hell is Chilli Jam?
7 October, 2008